Project Social Life

Project Social Life is an interactive performance piece by Social Club that explores the control of social media over a person’s real life decisions and our willingness to let it happen and shape our digital identity. This will play out over Instagram Story, using the poll function as our voting system. Social Club will spend a day together, with ADM as a meeting point. All is as per usual, except on this day all our actions will be curated by the social media public. The process as follows — we pose the questions, they give suggestions,  we run a poll, they have 10 minutes to vote, we execute.

We gave the audiences complete control over our lives on this day, including day to day doings such as eating and travelling. The audience can also call for us to execute unconventional deeds with no discretion to our levels of comfort. In this performance, the audience assumes the pseudo role of social media.

We performed Project Social Life on 14th April 2018. Social Club created a new instagram account by the handle @projectsociallife_, with a following of 51. They were mostly called in by publicity through our personal social media channels, and therefore consist mainly of our followers.

The following trailer will provide you with a better idea of what went down:

password: projectsociallife

This performance art doubles as a social experiment whereby we explore the metaphysical utopian quality of the social space. We curate our social media personas by selecting what to show and what not to show on our page. Therefore, through this curated snapshot of our day, we create a utopian narrative and social identity for ourselves. In this case, a very happy one.

The second half of our trailer showcases a heavier reality beyond those curated clips. It is testament to our ability to create a pseudo utopian reality through our instagram stories.

The biggest takeaway from this performance is the effect that even though we provide the social audience with decision making power, we as social media curators possess a certain level of choice and authority.

One thought on “Project Social Life”

  1. Shu, first I want to mention that the video you edited was really beautifully done, and had the essence and quality of the Carla Gannis work you were inspired by. Great work. Regarding your essay, I thought your opening and closing statements were well articulated regarding the concept of the The Social Life, how it turned over control to the viewer, and the way in which we make choices and give up authority (at times) in our use of social media.

    Where I thought the argument would have been strengthened is by including references from the class, works we have studied, perhaps Blast Theory, whose work we used as a model for this project. And perhaps a detailed description in terms of how you were influenced by the Carla Gannis video.

    But I want to commend you on an excellent project idea and again the video was beautifully constructed. I’ll seen additional notes about the video in a separate email.

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